Edwin Rekosh is the founder of PILnet, was its president and CEO until 2015, and continues to serve the organization as a senior advisor. He is currently a co-founder & managing partner of Rights CoLab, a platform for experts in the fields of civil society, technology, business and finance who collaborate to build new ways of organizing civic engagement and leveraging markets to improve the impact, resilience, and sustainability of human rights initiatives.
The original inspiration for PILnet, which Rekosh established as a program of Columbia Law School in August 1997, came from his work assisting the development of human rights groups in Romania and then elsewhere in Central and Eastern Europe during the early 1990s as they sought to engage with their countries' newly emerging constitutional orders. Rekosh lived for a cumulative total of 10 years in Romania and Hungary and has assisted civil society organizations and law schools to develop public interest legal programs in China and over 30 other countries in Europe, Asia, Africa and South America. He has also been a leader in the global growth of pro bono practice.